More from the 2008 interview with David Holmes, talking about The Holy Pictures album, which followed the death of his parents.


“My mum was so supportive of everything I did. She used to stay up till two in the morning listening to my mixes on Pete Tong and tell me how great they were. She would go to visit family in Chicago and bring boxes of hardcore dance music back for me — soul, rhythm and blues. She was just a great party woman, not through alcohol but through spirit.”
Holmes had been tinkering with ideas and sounds in his studio for years, but it was the death of his father from cancer last year which really saw the album take shape.
“Suddenly you realise that you’ve taken your parents for granted your whole life — just knowing they were there all the time,” he says. “It was such a shock. I was in the studio six weeks after my father died and I thought, right, I’m going to try to encapsulate these emotions and put them into the music. So that was the first time I’d consciously tackled those feelings and it was a brilliant experience because … I just knew when it was right. And afterwards I realised that those tracks could never have existed if I hadn’t lost my parents.”
Some of the album’s most vivid moments are instrumental, such as the mournful, poetic Ballad Of Jack And Sarah.
But the other half of the album, including the current pounding single I Heard Wonders, is led by a softly straining voice, vaguely reminiscent of the Jesus and Mary Chain’s Jim Reid.


Having previously, in his own words, “rented a pop star” to write lyrics and sing over his music, Holmes realised that in this case, there was only man who could provide the words and the voice for these capsule testimonies — and it scared the life out of him.
“When I started singing I reminded myself of all the people who can’t really sing but sound really good,” he admits, grinning.
“And I thought, the most important thing is, you have to do it from your heart. I loved singing, even though I was terrified by it. It was so cathartic and liberating. It was like going to therapy. “Every time I finished a song it was like drawing a line under it and walking away with a big smile on my face. There’s a lyric in there, ‘You’re crystallised in every drop of tear’.


“In a way I wanted to create a document that immortalised my parents, that I could keep forever.”


David Holmes – 69 Police (Kieran’s Mix)
David Holmes – 69 Police (Skylab Mix)
David Holmes – Jackson Johnson


Bonus track:
Justin Warfield – Live From The Opium Den (David Holmes Dub)


~ by acidted on August 1, 2009.

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